Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Stretching Your Art Self

We have an art museum in our town, the Grants Pass Museum of Art. It is a bonus, living in a small town, to have this kind of inspirational source. This time of year is our chance to give back to the museum and invest in its continued success. I donate a painting every year for their "Black, White and Blues" event. This year I chose an oil painting I did several years back. It is amazing to see how my faces have changed....

I also agreed to "art up" a mirror for the silent auction. I thought I could paint it and that would be it. A week and half later and it is done....best laid plans!
I loved the mirror and chose it without regard to how difficult it would be to work with a curved, cove style surface.
As I looked at the frame I thought it would be fun to challenge myself and do more of an assemblage piece. 

Collage...always pretty safe to start with. 

I had a tin shrine on my work table and thought that would work for the top. I had to figure out how to attach it. My trusty hubby unsoldered the cover and I attached the base with screws. I neede to hide the gap from the curved frame underneath. Out came the moulding paste. 

I decided to put moulding paste on almost everything. I had to include the back of the shrine because it will reflect in the mirror. What a mess!

My first choice for a face in the box of the tin shrine...too sweet! I was developing a darker theme, sort of Snow White/Rose Red...

I decided I liked the more sinister face instead.

I made an apple out of paper clay and inserted a doll's eye, stem and leaf with text on it. I thought the mini grapevine would help to hide the glue and fill in that darn cove!

I made some roses out of polymer clay. I liked how they turned out, but they are fragile. This is what happens when you don't really know what you are doing. I plan to find a book on how to make more stable clay items after this is done. The roses are wrapped with some leaves I had with text printed on them. I painted them with clear gesso to make them stiffer.

I painted the whole thing white and figured out the layout.

I found some vintage roses and collaged them onto the front of the shrine.

I burnt some pages of "Snow-White and Rose Red" and added those to the inside.

I used grapevines for the rose stems and nailed those onto the frame. I soaked them in water to prevent them from splitting when nailed and wrapped them in wire to form the curves. 
Once that was done I was lost in the painting process. Many layers of colors and dry brushing with white until I liked it. Of course I was in the zone and did not get progress pics....someday I will figure out how to capture that part. Time lapse maybe?

I love how all that moulding paste looks like old wood. Adding a little drippy red to the red rose side.

"White" rose...I attached the roses to the frame with liquid nails and wire wrapped around the grapevines.

Shrine closed.

Shrine Open...I used color pencil to add more definition to the face.

Serious clamping job to glue top of shrine onto the box...

Finished frame with shrine closed.

The finished frame whith the shrine doors open.
 This project really did stretch my creative muscles. I  learned alot and realized the joy that can be had problem solving. This project proves my theory of art making: Always say yes and figure it out as you go. 

If you are in the Southern Oregon area, I will see you at the Black, White and Blues Art Auction and Gala Event.
February 13, 2016
This piece could be yours!

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